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  • Solar Water heaters ?

    I can understand how tankless water heaters are not cost effective but I don't understand it with "solar". I have never really dealt with them and have no idea of the cost of a system or repairs or maintenance . I thought these were a good thing I have read a couple of post on here were you guys point out how they are not worth it but you are talking about tankless and comparing tankless to the "old solar wave that died out" what are the weak points with the solar system?

  • #2
    Re: Solar Water heaters ?

    big initial investment and by the time you add in the upkeep and replacement. tank, collectors, pump, valves, electricity. no room for savings.

    i doubt unless there are huge rebates, you'll never see a dime in savings.

    in the early seventies, they were installed. now i'm lucky to see 1 still working.

    rick.
    phoebe it is

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    • #3
      Re: Solar Water heaters ?

      I was at a phcc trade show and the guy at the solar stand told my boss it was not like the stuff sold in the 80s so every thing considered it is a wash? just like all the parts you could have to pay for with the tankless even you are having the sun pre heat the water? since the cost of operating a 50 gallon electric is $500 a year? I don't know how much it all cost. I have compared cost savings over their expected lifespan and it does not work out when compared with a cat 1 nat gas heater .
      Last edited by Clipper City Plumber; 05-03-2010, 02:25 AM.

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      • #4
        Re: Solar Water heaters ?

        we had solar put on the house in March. total cost $3,708.43. the 1st months savings was over $40.00. that included having house guests for 7 days. the clothes washer/drier ran every day, as did the dishwasher. lights, fans, TVs, etc that normally aren't on all day/night were.

        when the next bill comes in it will reflect a better idea of the savings. we believe it ti be about 30% or around $70.00

        now there was a 50% rebate from the energy office and a 30% tax credit. so all said & done at the end of the year the solar water will have cost us around$700.00 and will pay for itself in a year.

        i could not be happier about this

        today's technology is not yesterdays crap

        steve
        In the never ending struggle to keep the water flowing.... The Poo Poo Cowboy rides again!!!

        Comment


        • #5
          aaaahhhh steve

          you were given 80% of the cost. if you had bought the 80s model at a 80% discount, it would have paid for itself in a short period. this works because someone bought it for you. i don't have a dog in that fight. what happens when it needs repairs? does someone pay 80% of that or does it just sit unused? hell if you will pay 80% for me i will put one in and i live in indiana. breid..................

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Solar Water heaters ?

            Or lets try this one ...

            Say you are out in the "country" and can Home brew a system for say $500.00 (Or Less) and keep it up with "surplus" parts and do all the work yourself ...

            Now there's a thought ...;-)

            Dave

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Solar Water heaters ?

              Originally posted by stxrus View Post
              we had solar put on the house in March. total cost $3,708.43. the 1st months savings was over $40.00. that included having house guests for 7 days. the clothes washer/drier ran every day, as did the dishwasher. lights, fans, TVs, etc that normally aren't on all day/night were.

              when the next bill comes in it will reflect a better idea of the savings. we believe it ti be about 30% or around $70.00

              now there was a 50% rebate from the energy office and a 30% tax credit. so all said & done at the end of the year the solar water will have cost us around$700.00 and will pay for itself in a year.

              i could not be happier about this

              today's technology is not yesterdays crap

              steve
              steve, are you on propane or natural gas?

              my gas bills are under $10.00 a month. the tankless has no pilot lite and therefore none of the other appliances have a standing pilot lite.

              how much water do you heat in the land of sunshine

              rick.
              phoebe it is

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Solar Water heaters ?

                I know this is thread drift,
                but I use windmills as my main supply for pumping well water,

                now I got the one windmill for free and a few hundred in repairs, and the other I got for $500 and a few hundred in repairs,

                and did all the work my self, so no out lay of moneys,

                now I did calculations, and at .08 cents a kw hr, for electricity, If the price of electricity even doubles over the next 30 years, the saving of free, would not pay for the price of buying a new windmill, and tower from a dealer, and I compared it to a submersible pump,in cost, buy the sub pump and equipment, and the electricity for the same gallons of water, and the cost on paper would be less than Using free wind power via windmill at new prices,
                (the difference is it takes no electric for the windmills), and if that is a concern then the windmills look attractive,

                on the solar hot water heater systems, usually the maintenance and tinkering that is needed to keep them working, and expense, and the initial cost is usually more than saving recouped,
                ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

                now the solar barrel shower is cost effective, 4 posts, platform, on the base (old pallet. to keep your feet clean, and the top of the posts a plat form to hold a black steel drum, (usually with the bottom cut out, and the 3/4" bung with a short pipe in it, and a valve and tin can with holes in it suspended by a wire, for a shower head, (most of the time the posts are wrapped with a tarp or sides added, for privacy,

                fill with water in the morning and in the summer you have a hot shower by evening,

                (my FIL used a solar shower for most of his farming years, in the summer time before they had tractor cabs to help keep the dirt off of one),
                Push sticks/blocks Save Fingers
                ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
                "The true measure of a man is how he treats someone who can do him absolutely no good."
                attributed to Samuel Johnson
                ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
                PUBLIC NOTICE: Due to recent budget cuts, the rising cost of electricity, gas, and oil...plus the current state of the economy............the light at the end of the tunnel, has been turned off.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Solar Water heaters ?

                  Originally posted by PLUMBER RICK View Post
                  steve, are you on propane or natural gas?

                  my gas bills are under $10.00 a month. the tankless has no pilot lite and therefore none of the other appliances have a standing pilot lite.

                  how much water do you heat in the land of sunshine

                  rick.
                  electric. pretty much universal here

                  i have a 50 gallon tank. it gets really freaking hot. because it is mounted on the roof there is no recirc pump. also, if there is an issue with lack of sunlight for a few days, like after a storm, then i can plug the tank into WAPA (our power company) or my generator if need be.

                  steve
                  In the never ending struggle to keep the water flowing.... The Poo Poo Cowboy rides again!!!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Solar Water heaters ?

                    Originally posted by breid1903 View Post
                    you were given 80% of the cost. if you had bought the 80s model at a 80% discount, it would have paid for itself in a short period. this works because someone bought it for you. i don't have a dog in that fight. what happens when it needs repairs? does someone pay 80% of that or does it just sit unused? hell if you will pay 80% for me i will put one in and i live in indiana. breid..................
                    1st i would like to thank breid for making this possible his tax dollars at work. you will have to buy your own and my condolences for living in indiana

                    there is little or no maintenance. if the house is to sit empty for say 2 weeks then we drain the water back into our cistern and refill it when we return. on our average day the water will hit 120 in just over 2 hours from a cold fill

                    as far as repairs go. the units are built in St Thomas and i can getany part, if needed, here in 24 hours by boat. the company that did the install carries most replacement/repair parts in stock. 2 years on labor and 10 years on hte unit.

                    this probably won't be as effective in northern climes as here. we were going to go ahead with this anyway but the rebates & tax credits just made it happen sooner

                    steve
                    In the never ending struggle to keep the water flowing.... The Poo Poo Cowboy rides again!!!

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Solar Water heaters ?

                      Solar water heaters are being installed two a day in my town. The power company here partnered with Rheem to get the equipment at a good price, and they are offering financing to the homeowners. Zero down, zero percent financing rolled into your power bill for up to twenty years. The financing is tied to the house, not the homeowner, and the homeowner gets the tax credits.

                      It makes it a lot harder to sell a water heater when half the town says they are on the list to have a solar water heater installed.

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                      • #12
                        Re: Solar Water heaters ?

                        wow, we pay .35 / kwh now. it was up to .43 / kwh last year....solar is the way to go

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                        • #13
                          Re: Solar Water heaters ?

                          I'll say here in Phoenix metro "the valley of the sun"
                          90% of new homes do not have a solar water system.

                          As others mentioned in the mid 70's through early 80's they were
                          rather popular. I'd estimate 90% of those have been removed or
                          are no longer in service.

                          We do not have a lot of snow or hail to damage them, but they do
                          require maintenance in keeping them clean etc.

                          They are extremely ugly on the roof and often the contractor opts not to offer them, as well as those dreaded home owner associations.

                          They are still quite expensive ..not just the materials but the labor to install them.

                          We are in an older neighborhood and have a gas water heater..it's very economical.

                          typically those [the majority] using electric water heaters have timers on their water heaters. This way they run them briefly in the morning for showers and at night for laundry, dishwasher and maybe a second shower [some folks actually believe in personal hygiene]

                          In the summer time even our cold tap water can reach 90 degrees so cold showers here are only in the fall and winter.

                          Cactus Man

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                          • #14
                            Re: Solar Water heaters ?

                            I belive the electric heat pump will be the new fad. 258% efficient @ 68 degrees and 150% @ 32 degrees is hard to beat. Nice they can run off 110v and 50 tank gallon provides a 43 gallon 1st hour rating. All for about 1500 installed.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Solar Water heaters ?

                              Originally posted by cactusman View Post
                              but they do
                              require maintenance in keeping them clean etc.

                              They are extremely ugly on the roof
                              please elaborate on the maintenance issue

                              yes, they are ugly but ours sits between 2 peaks so it's not visible except from a certain angle. besides the satellite dish hides it even more

                              steve
                              In the never ending struggle to keep the water flowing.... The Poo Poo Cowboy rides again!!!

                              Comment

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